'Plein Air' with Michael Richardson

'Not Just a Painting Holiday'

'Plein Air' with Michael Richardson

11th to 17th May, 2014


"I was so taken by this splendid vision that I never forgot it and it has become the star or, at least, the setting for most of my paintings, my beautiful Trasimeno."

Gerardo Dottori


Softly rolling hills on the borders of Umbria and Tuscany. The marriage of two magnificent regions on the banks of the serene Lago Trasimeno

Your location will be the hill-top village of Castel Rigone nestled in pine-woods and surrounded by rolling hills, Castel Rigone is a beautiful 'working' , hill-top medieval village with winding stepped streets, quaint houses and three lovely original wall-towers. Apart from during the Annual 'Festa dei Barbari' every August it is 'tranquile' and untouched by tourism.

Your accommodation is the exclusive but small and friendly 4 star 'Relais La Fattoria' hotel with its open terrace ovelooking the hillside and lake. Breakfast and dinner are included in your package and will be taken in the hotel's 'Hermann's Forest Ristorante' renowned for its excellent service, delicious local specialities and tasteful decor.


During the afternoons you will be free to continue your painting or enjoy quiet walks, a drink or gelato at our village bar or simply to relax by the pool or in one of the hotel's comfortable lounges. There are several wonderful walks into the open countryside varying in length from 4km to 12km and extensive pine-woods offering shade on sunny days.

Included in your holiday are two excursions and a wine and local produce tasting session!

Transfer will be from Perugia Airport.


Beginning, Sunday the 8th September, 2013 for 7 nights.

Castel Rigone Views

The Course

Michael is a master of 'Plein Air' painting!

He is also an experienced and relaxed teacher with many years experience of workshops and painting holidays all over the world.

This holiday caters for artists of all abilities who want to make a transition to Plein Air painting, or to those who want to learn to work faster and better in the demanding conditions of outdoor work. Plenty of one to one time will be offered.


Michael will begin each session with demonstrations and advice on such subjects as, "Tonal control throughout the whole painting", "Colour mixing", "Seeing like an Artist", "Perspective", "Composition" and "Expression through tonal control" plus the way of tackling things like figures in the landscape as well as the modern trappings of our era, like cars.


His courses always centre on the differences between studio and plein air painting, and how to merge those methods and to carry the extra information into the studio later. Learning to see "sur le motif" and how to edit unnecessary clutter. How to avoid working wet in wet and losing control.

For more experienced painters Michael will also concentrate on expression through tonal control.


Most of your week will be spent in and around the village of Castel Rigone capturing the spectacular landscapes. We will also visit our nearest town Passignano which provides the opportunity to paint the lake and marina. Also included in the holiday is a day's excursion to the magnificent town of Assisi with its incredible Basilica, churches and Rocca.



Three of Michael's recent paintings

About the Artist


Michael Richardson was born in 1943 in North London. His fathers illness forced the family to move out of London after the war ended to Ipswich in Suffolk, a particularly pleasant rural county in the South East of England also known as "Constable Country".


He was encouraged to take further art education on leaving Ipswich School in 1960 and trained at Ipswich School of Art as a sculptor and painter 1960-1962. At this time a keen interest in sailing led him into a career in the marine industry where he specialised in sail design and manufacture.


During this period he maintained his interest in art and returned to full time painting in 1992.


As a result of his marine industry experience he is drawn to subjects containing boats and his knowledge of the way they are designed and built lends authenticity to his marine work.


A prolific output, in watercolour and oils has found homes all over the globe, a large number of which are in America.


He has organised several overseas painting holidays for other artists in France Belgium and Holland. He has also travelled extensively painting throughout Europe, The Far East, Indonesia, New Zealand, Australia and the USA.


His main current interest is in plein air painting enjoying the challenge of working fast in all weathers in front of the subject.


He is a member of the Wapping Group of Artists, probably the oldest outdoor painting society in the UK which numbers several of the most prominent British landscape and marine artists, The Chelsea Art Society, United Society of Artists and is a founder member of the Brass Monkeys Art Society.


He has exhibited at the Royal Academy of Arts, The Royal Society of Marine Artists, The Royal Institute of Oil Painters and The Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolour at the Mall Galleries in London.

Please see the following link to Michael's website.

'Not Just a Painting Holiday'

Not Just a Painting Holiday' is a small company owned by UK artist, teacher and travel journalist, Judi Brereton who has more than thirty years experience of this area of Italy. Ten years ago Judi and her husband Michael, purchased a house in Castel Rigone and realising the area's huge artisitic potential, Judi decided to base her Art, Culture and Cuisine Holidays in the village.

Since then highly acclaimed artists from all over the world have brought groups to paint in this beautiful location and to enjoy the wonderful food, wine and the warmth and hospitality of the people. It is a unique opportunity to experience life in the 'real' Italy whilst pursuing an interest in art.


Do watch this video about the holiday!

'Plein Air' Painting Holiday with Michael Richardson